The iMac Pro has been gone for a year now and the 27-inch iMac just left the building. So, when should we expect Apple silicon successors to those systems?
- Apple discontinued the $4,999 iMac Pro in March 2021. Fast forward to March 2022 and there still isn’t a replacement for the Pro-branded all-in-one.
- Apple quietly removed the 27-inch iMac from sale following its March 8 “Peek Performance” event, and currently only offers the M1-based 24-inch iMac. It’s yet to unveil an Apple silicon successor to the 27-inch Intel-based iMac.
- Respected analysts like Ming-Chi Kuo now expect a new Apple silicon Mac, probably a new iMac Pro or an update to the current Mac Pro, sometime in 2023.
Is the iMac Pro gone forever?
Between the new Mac Studio workstation and the new $1,599 27-inch monitor, dubbed Studio Display—plus the current iMac having gone from 21.5 to 24 inches and swapping Intel chips for Apple silicon—there may not be enough room or reason for the iMac Pro to exist. The whole point of the iMac Pro, as suggested by Pro branding, is to create an all-in-one desktop that can serve creative professionals for years to come. Read: New to Mac? 15 tips and tricks for macOS beginners
But as soon as Apple transitioned its baseline iMac to its own chips, it discontinued the iMac Pro because the $4,999 computer couldn’t compete with a much more affordable 24-inch iMac powered by the Apple M1 chip. So the question is, why bother to resurrect iMac Pro branding when you could just release an Apple silicon successor to the discontinued 27-inch iMac and call it a day? Or perhaps there’s such thing as an “iMac Studio” in the works that could fill the void left by the removal of the iMac Pro and 27-inch iMac from the lineup?
Where’s an Apple silicon update to the 27-inch iMac?
Apple has quietly removed the 27-inch Intel-based iMac from sale following the March 8 event. So is the 27-incher also gone for good or did Apple feel compelled to temporarily remove it from sale because it ran on old (Intel) technology? It’s difficult to say what’s going on here, but it’s true that the 27-inch iMac with its 10th generation Intel chips cannot compete with the new Mac Studio system.
Predictions for Apple's new desktop products:
1. 2022: More powerful Mac mini and more affordable external display (27-inch without mini-LED).
2. 2023: Mac Pro and iMac Pro.
— 郭明錤 (Ming-Chi Kuo) (@mingchikuo) March 6, 2022
Now, some folks have said that a Mac Studio + Studio Display is a replacement for the 27-inch iMac, especially given the Studio Display adds 5K on a 27-inch panel and a 12-megapixel ultra-wide camera. In reality, however, there’s a significant price gap between the discontinued 27-inch iMac, which started at $1,799, and a Mac Studio paired with a Studio Display, a combo that starts at $3,598.
Respected analysts have revised their predictions and now expect a larger iMac powered by Apple silicon sometime in 2023, not 2022. Whether it ends up being called just an “iMac” or “iMac Pro” is irrelevant so long as it brings more bang for the buck than either the discontinued iMac Pro or 27-inch iMac.